Nonprofit Center Board Service Fellowship

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Nonprofit Center Board Service Fellowship

What is the Board Service Fellowship?

Behind every healthy and high-functioning nonprofit, there is a diverse and highly skilled Board of Directors.The Nonprofit Center Board Service Fellowship aims to build a talent pipeline that helps local nonprofits cultivate boards that reflect the diversity of their mission and their program participants. By offering this program, the Nonprofit Center will develop diverse and qualified candidates who are eager to become engaged in board service and will facilitate connections to nonprofit organizations through a matching process

Why does the Board Service Fellowship focus on diversity?

Finding and recruiting the right pool of board members plays a significant role in the sustainability of a nonprofit organization. Many organizations struggle to effectively recruit diverse pools of board members because they rely heavily on the social and professional networks of current board members to find new candidates.

Significant research shows that composing a diverse board is crucial for the long-term success of organizations. Diversity is often reduced to singular factors, such as race or ethnicity, but is much more complex and layered. A truly diverse board should contain not only a mix of racial and ethnic backgrounds, but also diversity of experience, ability, social identity, connection to community, leadership style, and diversity of thought and background. The Nonprofit Center believes that board diversity is a crucial issue for local nonprofits to address.

"While board composition is not one-size-fits all, a board that is homogeneous in any way risks having blind spots that negatively impact its ability to make the best decisions..." -- Leading With Intent, 2017

What happens in the Board Service Fellowship?

The Board Service Fellowship is designed to recruit, train, and orient community members seeking to begin or advance their board service. Between June and August 2020, Board Service Fellows will work with Nonprofit Center experts to:
  • Understand the important role of board service in strengthening nonprofit organizations and the nonprofit sector as a whole
  • Participate in 3 program days that include training on nonprofit board roles and responsibilities; the different types of nonprofit boards, and how to develop individual strengths and expertise in order to communicate their unique value to a nonprofit board 
  • Identify their community interests in order to be matched with a local nonprofit to fulfill a one-year Board Service Fellowship 
  • Maximize opportunities for peer-to-peer learning and networking 

Program FAQ

  • This program is intended for those that are new to (less than 3 years experience) or seeking to begin board service
  • Candidates will be expected to:
    • Have a demonstrated commitment to community service
    • Provide two professional references
    • Attend and participate in all 3 program days:
      • Monday, June 29 - 8:30 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.
      • Monday, July 27 - 8:30 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.
      • Monday, August 24 - 8:30 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.
    • Commit to a one-year Board Service Fellowship with a local nonprofit organization
  •  Submit this application no later than April 20, 2020.
  • Curious about how COVID-19 might affect this program? Please check our COVID-19 page for our latest programming shifts and changes.
  • Are you a nonprofit organization interested in hosting a Board Service Fellow? Please reach out to Callan Brown at or (904) 425-1185.

Generously sponsored by

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